Editorial Discusses Ultrasound in Point-of-Care Diagnostics

(HealthDay News) — Ultrasound devices represent an important point-of-care diagnostic modality, which is increasingly being used in numerous specialties, according to an editorial published in the December issue of Global Heart.

Bret P. Nelson, M.D., and Jagat Narula, M.D., Ph.D., from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, discuss the increasing use of ultrasound as a diagnostic modality.

The authors note that ultrasound is increasingly being used, especially in under-resourced environments, and that advances in telemedicine have enabled further expansion of ultrasound use. Many specialists have adopted point-of-care ultrasound technology into common clinical practice, and as such, hospitals are mandating ultrasound training and medical schools are implementing ultrasound curricula. Despite its widespread utility, ultrasound machines are expensive and financial considerations impact their use. Furthermore, point-of-care ultrasound is a new field and many older clinicians completed their training before ultrasound use was introduced into their specialty; other physicians are uncomfortable using ultrasound as part of the bedside physical examination. New guidelines are being codified to incorporate point-of-care ultrasound use into clinical practice, and training, interpretation, and documentation standards should be developed.

“This issue celebrates the power of hand-held ultrasound devices and makes an attempt to put together a comprehensive compendium for the use of ultrasound in bedside care,” Nelson and Narula write.

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